The World Premiere of ‘The Language of Beauty in African Art' Exhibition Will Display This Spring

By Nicole Choma | February 10, 2022

Curated by the Art Institute of Chicago, The Language of Beauty in African Art will feature over 200 artifacts including masks, sculptures, powerful historical figures, and more. The collection will feature private and public collections at the Kimbell Art Museum of Fort Worth, Texas, from April 3-July 31, 2022.

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For the Kimbell Art Museum, it’s the first exhibition in 25 years that features work solely from Africa. “We are committed to showcasing great works of art from around the globe, so we are pleased to work with the Art Institute and curator Constantine Petridis to present this magnificent exhibition of African art," said Eric M. Lee, director of the Kimbell Art Museum, in a press statement. "What sets this exhibition apart –and why we felt it was vital to bring it to Kimbell audiences – is its focus on the ideas of the artists and communities that created the objects rather than on outside perspectives."

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Many of the works explore the aesthetics of different cultures seen throughout Africa and how the appearance of a work of art is an integrated combination of appearance and being, of form and meaning. Many of the sculptures, masks, and figures date back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The exhibition will be divided into eight sections. Some of these sections include examining Western historical appreciation of African art, how art and language interact, the meaning of beauty in African art, and more.

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Curator of Asian, African, and Ancient American Art, Jennifer Casler Price, says in a statement that the exhibit “not only recognizes the richness and variety of African art, it demonstrates that despite the wide cultural diversity of a vast continent, there is also unity that speaks to a shared humanity and explains why art matters. That beauty has meaning and is related to the purpose and function of the art. This is art for life’s sake."

The exhibition is scheduled to move to the Art Institute of Chicago in fall 2022. Click here to book tickets for the world premiere at the Kimbell Art Museum.

Photography by: John Bigelow Taylor; Courtesy of Schweizer Premodern, New York; Bart Huysmans and Michel Wuyts